- Format – Hardback
- No. of Pages – 96 Pages
- Language – Swedish
- Release Date – May 2017
- Publisher – Pagina Forlag / Printworks
- ISBN – 9789163613036
- Size – 21.6 x 1.5 x 25.1 cm
Mytologiska Vasen by Studio Lofstrom is the same format and smaller size as other popular Swedish colouring books with a beautiful hardback cover. Relatively unknown compared to more popular Swedish colouring books by Hanna Karlzon, Maria Trolle and Emelie Lidehall Oberg, this lovely book is also worth a look, although it is very different in style to the afore-mentioned artists. The paper inside is gorgeous and smooth and the illustrations are lovely and it is both stitch and glue bound. The majority of the paper is white but there are some with printed black backgrounds too. The cover is lavender with a linework patially-coloured illustration with lovely Mauve coloured foiled writing. The spine has a lovely textured turquoise paper tooled with the same Mauve foiling with the title and authors name. The title translates to Mythological Vase in English.
On opening the beautiful cover you are greeted with turquoise paper pages on the inside cover and first page. This is also repeated at the close of the book. Next there is a title page on the reverse of which there are the publishing details followed by a simple nameplate page which states “denna bok tillhör” which means “This book belongs to.” Then follows all the lovely illustrations.
The book is in storybook format so the illustrations are printed both front and back (if you use alcohol markers you will lose the reverse, so if you wish to colour it all this way I suggest buying two copies). Pencils work wonderfully well, although I prefer to use my Prismacolor Premier’s on this paper due to the fact that I’m a bit heavy-handed sometimes with my colouring and as the paper is smooth I found with other Swedish books with the same format and paper, I flattened the tooth too quickly and white paper was still showing through when I used my Polychromos pencils, but I have seen some wonderful work in these books done with them so not everyone will find this problem, I guess it’s all down to your colouring style.
Water-based markers should be fine, but do check as this will vary depending on how juicy they are so best to test them out first. The ink is unusually grey rather than a crisp black and the linework is fine. This means that the lines will nicely disappear into your colouring but this may be a little difficult for those with slight visual impairments to see easily. The linework however is crisply printed and consistant so this should help you to be able to see easily what things are. It also took watercolour paints surprisingly well considering it isn’t watercolour paper with only minimum wrinkling, so for those who love this particular media this book is a good choice although you may wish to use it in conjunction with markers or pencils for the smaller details.
The illustrations themselves are linear-type illustrations of landscapes and plants with insects, flowers and mythological figures. Familiar mythological figures such as Artemis, Bastet, Sphinx, Kitsune and Isis are featured along with characters I wasn’t aware of before such as Mami Wata, Tawret, Morrigan and Califia, so for those of you who love other books with Mythological creatures, this book is very different from those both in style and content. At the back of the book there is a very handy key of all the figures and although it is in Swedish a simple Google search for a Swedish to English translator will make finding out more about these characters easy enough. It really deserves to be more popular as these pictures will look beautifully coloured.
I decided to colour this illustration of the Egyptian Cat Goddess Bastet using Windsor and Newton Watercolour paints and Prismacolor Premier Pencils. Highlights were added with white Posca Paint pen. The paper took the water surprisingly well with only slight wrinkling, with a quick iron I suspect it will lie totally flat again.
Only available at the present time from Sweden. You can purchase it from www.printworksmarket.com.
I was kindly sent a copy from the publisher, however all views and opinions expressed are my own and are not influenced by this.